Adding Iniquity to Injury

By DeusExMacintosh

Marikana miners charged with murder of colleagues shot by police

Workers arrested at South Africa’s Marikana mine have been charged in court with the murder of 34 of their colleagues shot by police.

The 270 workers would be tried under the “common purpose” doctrine because they were in the crowd which confronted police on 16 August, an official said.

Police opened fire, killing 34 miners and sparking a national outcry.

The decision to charge the workers was “madness”, said former ruling ANC party youth leader Julius Malema.

“The policemen who killed those people are not in custody, not even one of them. This is madness,” said Mr Malema, who was expelled from the ANC (African National Congress) earlier this year following a series of disagreements with President Jacob Zuma.

“The whole world saw the policemen kill those people,” Mr Malema said, adding that he would ask defence lawyers to make an urgent application at the high court.

The killing of the 34 was the most deadly police action since South Africa became a democracy in 1994.

Six of the 270 workers remain in hospital, after being wounded in the shooting at the mine owned by Lonmin, the world’s third biggest platinum producer, in South Africa’s North West province.

The other 264 workers appeared in the Ga Rankuwa magistrates court near the capital, Pretoria.

BBC News

4 Comments

  1. Posted August 31, 2012 at 8:06 am | Permalink

    If they are going down this road then a number of CEO’s of the relevant mines should be in jail for manslaughter. The riots are being caused by unsafe working conditions. Tinker any memory bells of our industrial history?

  2. Posted September 1, 2012 at 1:20 am | Permalink

    Looks like the Justice Minister may be having second thoughts

  3. Patrick
    Posted September 3, 2012 at 8:53 am | Permalink

    John H, the problem is not the CEOs, it is the unions – this is essentially an inter-union turf war between the entrenched union, which has of course become sufficiently entrenched as to worry mainly about further entrenchment (through politics) and its own wealth, and on the other side a rival union seeking to entrench itself, by starting with the actual worker’s ‘interests’.

    Poor workers caught in the middle, but its a damned system. A responsible CEO wouldn’t operate in South Africa, arguably, but that would be taking an unnaturally long-run view of the workers’ best interests too.

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